A/N: This is a bit abstract, but I think I like it.  I own nothing, and I make no money from this. Everything is the property of Universal. *Lizz



            He’d gone to her house that night for dinner. He was a little early, but nonetheless he was surprised to find that she wasn’t in the kitchen cooking. He set the pie on the counter. It was rhubarb, did he ever bring anything else? He called for her, and when he received no answer he began to worry, and set off through the house looking for her.


            At the top of the stairs, the door at the end of the hall, the one that led to the attic stood open. He called her name again as he made his way carefully up the stairs. Again she didn’t answer, but when he reached the top he saw she was indeed there. She sat, in the center of the pool of light given off by the one bare bulb in the middle of a circle of memories. He stood in the doorway, not wanting to intrude on her thoughts. The room was silent for many minutes. She didn’t acknowledge him directly, but began speaking as she put the items around her away.


            “Frank’s uniform from the war. He never took it out. He said the only thing he wanted to remember was coming home. His mother’s pearl necklace. He always wanted a daughter to give it to. I never wore it, it wasn’t meant to be given to a wife.” She touched the pearls gently, before closing the box and laying it on top of the uniform. Then she continued, “Grady’s christening gown, and his stuffed animal. A lamb, how fitting for him, and he carried it everywhere.”


            Finally, she picked up the picture that had been resting in her lap. “Grady’s high school graduation. Frank was so proud. As proud as any father. And now our little boy is getting married. Frank would be so happy.”


            He watched through teary eyes as she placed the photograph in with the blanket and the other memories. She stood, and turned to look at him for the first time. Her eyes were filled with tears as well. Then she reached up to turn out the light, and with a quiet click, she gently closed the lid of the Hope Chest.